I mentioned before that the Appointments and Conditions of Service Committee met last week with all discussion items hidden under a veil of secrecy. After all you don't want to be embarrassed by the ridiculous spend on consultants when you're discussing redundancies and cuts to terms and conditions for permanent staff, benevolently titled "Managing the Impact on Colleagues of the Financial Challenges Facing the Council".
I've heard some rumours about what the latest cuts to staff terms will be as agreed at the meeting. I should stress that I can't verify the accuracy of this but the person I heard it from does know what s/he's talking about.
Apparently then, the following changes are afoot -
Big reductions to redundancy payments
No longer being paid for first three days off sick
Reducing time on redeployment from 3 to 6 months
and most bizzarrely, forcing over 55s to reduce their hours
The first three changes come straight from Daily Mail land and, as such, will probably face limited criticism in the media. Apart from complaining that the 'gold plated' pensions are still in place of course. But the last one is barmy and is certain to face legal challenge under age discrimination rules if it really does go ahead.
I really do wonder if NCC's 'equalities and diversity' advisers even have the beginnings of a clue. After all there was their appalling abuse of Equality Impact Assessments as a weapon against CERN and only last week there was the introduction of age discrimination into the sports and leisure concessions scheme.
It will be interesting if there is any suggestion of cuts to senior management pay and perks, after all we've been reassured that 'we're all in this together' by the PM and who are NCC to go against that? This has added resonance because it looks like the cost cutting measure to get rid of the Director of Adult Services has been effectively reversed, meaning the loss of those savings.
Still, I'm sure we can guess how that will go eh?